Turmeric and beetroot lattes more novelty than nutrition source - dietitian

Turmeric and beetroot lattes are becoming popular but won't be replacing anyone's flat white or cappuccino any time soon.
SIMON O'CONNOR/STUFF

Turmeric and beetroot lattes are becoming popular but won't be replacing anyone's flat white or cappuccino any time soon.

Lattes made with spices or powdered vegetables are more of a novelty menu item than source of nutrition, an expert says.

Zoe Flower and Matt Cotteret, owners of Emmalou Macaron and Coffee House in New Plymouth, recently launched turmeric and beetroot lattes and are selling around 30 a week.

"They've actually been pretty popular, especially when we first started doing them. We now have people that come in especially for them," Flower said.

Zoe Flower, co-owner of Emmalou Macaron and Coffee House in New Plymouth makes around 30 of the new flavored coffees a week.
SIMON O'CONNOR/STUFF

Zoe Flower, co-owner of Emmalou Macaron and Coffee House in New Plymouth makes around 30 of the new flavored coffees a week.

"We definitely have regular customers who come in for one every week but not everyday as yet."

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The drinks are made with steamed milk of your choice - including soy, almond or coconut - and the spice or a powdered beetroot mix. They cost the same as other drinks on the menu - $4.50. 

Kris Boult tries the turmeric latte, which has a more savoury flavour.
SIMON O'CONNOR/STUFF

Kris Boult tries the turmeric latte, which has a more savoury flavour.

Taste wise they're totally different, turmeric's quite savory and the beetroot's quite sweet so which one you'll prefer will depend on your own individual taste.

While tasty, Jackie Keenan, a dietitian at Taranaki Base Hospital, said the drinks would have little nutritional value. 

"Studies have shown that 500mls of fresh beetroot juice daily is needed to help reduce blood pressure levels, so anyone looking for any direct health benefit wouldn't get it from having one coffee."

The lattes are made with steamed milk - inclduing coconut, almond and soy milk - along with the spice or powdered beetroot.
SIMON O'CONNOR/STUFF

The lattes are made with steamed milk - inclduing coconut, almond and soy milk - along with the spice or powdered beetroot.

And while Keenan believed turmeric did have some health benefits, one coffee a week wouldn't significantly change anyone's health status.

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Flower said Turmeric had been the more popular flavour and they had received only positive feedback from customers about the drinks.

"I think people are more familiar with turmeric and the health related benefits of it," Flower said.

"We tend to have to push people into the beetroot one even though I think it's the nicer flavoured one."

The drinks don't actually contain any caffeine and Flower believed the two new options wouldn't be replacing anyone's daily cappuccino or flat white any time soon but were a good alternative.

"The majority of people still want their coffee hit. Coffee is now such an integral part of society and we have such a strong coffee culture here in New Zealand," Flower said.

"People need the caffeine hit to keep themselves going during the day."

While the two new coffees weren't written on the menu yet they would more than likely become permanent additions soon.

"I don't see why we'd stop doing them," Flower said.

There are no immediate plans to release any other flavours as yet but Flower and Cotteret are looking at the possibility of introducing a Matcha green tea flavour in the future.

"We're just trying to adapt to the changing flavours and dietary requirements of customers and trying to keep them happy," Cotteret said.

 - Stuff

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